Iranian Journal of Medical Sciences

Document Type: Original Article(s)


1 Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Atomic Energy Commission, Damascus, Syria

2 Department of Chemistry, Atomic Energy Commission, Damascus, Syria


Background: Despite the medical discoveries of different medicines and advanced ways of treatment, statistics have shown that the number of patients is increasing. This may be due to chemical drugs used in healthcare, agriculture, and diets. This soaring demand in medicines urges us to look for natural sources such as aromatic plants and essential oils, which are rich in efficient compounds.
Methods: Extraction of essential oils was performed using a Clevenger-type apparatus. Identification was achieved using the GC-FID technique. Confirmation was made using the GC-MS technique, and isolation was done using a preparative HPLC, equipped with an aliquots collector. The microdilution broth susceptibility assay was utilized to determine minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs).
Results: Our in vitro study demonstrated the antibacterial activity of the Thymus syriacus Boiss essential oil and its components against the tested isolates at levels between 0.375 and 50 µl/ml. The main components of the T. syriacus essential oil were carvacrol, γ-terpinene, and ß–caryophyllene. MIC90 values for the T. syriacus essential oil against the gram-negative organisms varied between 3.125 and 12.5 µl/ml. The most effective components against the gram-negative bacteria were thymol, carvacrol, dihydro-carvon, and linalool respectively.
Conclusions: The T. syriacus essential oil and some of its components exhibited very good inhibitory effects against Syrian gram-negative isolates.